Current state of knowledge and experts' perspective on the subcutaneous implantable cardioverter-defibrillator

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ICD implantation is today a well-recognized therapy to prevent sudden cardiac death. The available implantable devices at present need the use of permanent endocavitary leads which may cause, in some instances, serious troubles to the patients (lead dislodgement, ventricular perforation, lead infections, etc.). A new implantable defibrillator provided by only a subcutaneous lead is at present under evaluation. Its potential indications, usefulness benefits, and problems represent an interesting field of investigation and discussion. This paper describes the conclusions recently reached by a panel of experts, with regard to the potential role of an implantable subcutaneous defibrillator in the prevention of sudden cardiac death.

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